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Violent extremism: Upper East Region hit with double whammy – NCCE

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Political instability and violence in neighboring countries continue to pose a threat to Ghana’s peace and security

Out of the 486 attempted or successful military coups carried out globally since 1950, Africa accounts for the largest number with 214, of which at least 106 have been successful.

There have been coups in neighboring countries like Burkina Faso, Mali, Guinea, Niger, and most recently Gabon in August 2023.

To better understand the consequence of the destabilization of governments across the sub-region along with issues of violent extremism, the NCCE embarked on a baseline study entitled “Community Attitudes/Behaviors and Institutional Preparedness/Response towards Containing and Preventing Violent Extremism in Northern Ghana” with support from the EU.

The baseline study revealed that at-risk groups/youth, who form a chunk of Ghana’s population, are more likely to be lured into violent extremist activities.

The study found that with young people constituting a significant percentage of Ghana’s population, the demographic presents a valuable opportunity to engage and empower young people in preventing and containing violent extremism. Young people are often more susceptible to radicalization due to various factors such as unemployment, lack of opportunities, and feelings of marginalization.

The situation of the Upper East Region is even more vulnerable, according to the Upper East Regional Director of the NCCE, Frederick Mawuli Agbenu. He spoke to Mark Smith on the Day Break Upper East Show recently.

“The Upper East Region is suffering a double whammy, if I may say so. We are bounded by two countries who have experienced violent extremism, and most of the displaced persons are coming into the Upper East Region. The Ghana Refugee Board has even established a camp in the Bawku West District to accommodate them.”

“The NCCE has taken this issue seriously, and we are taking the message to the youth so that they cannot be radicalized. So that they would also know that look, we may be facing challenges, but the future still holds something good for us,” he said.

Mr. Agbenu said the NCCE is holding engagements with the youth in various schools and communities to sensitize them to the need to be conscious of their personal safety and the safety of the country as well.

The engagements are also being done with political party activists to remind young people that they can have different political ideologies and still not be enemies.

Source: A1Radioonline.com|101.1MHz|Mark Kwasi Ahumah Smith|Bolgatanga

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